6.4/10
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36 user 12 critic

The Program (1993)

Several players from different backgrounds try to cope with the pressures of playing football at a major university. Each deals with the pressure differently, some turn to drinking, others to drugs, and some to studying.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Jon Pennell ...
Bobby Collins (as Jon Maynard Pennell)
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Louanne (as Joey Adams)
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Joe's Father
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Leon Pridgen ...
Ray Griffen (as J. Leon Pridgen II)
Michael Flippo ...
Coach Humes (as Mike Flippo)
Jeff Portell ...
Reporter #1
Ernest Dixon ...
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Storyline

A college football coach is told by his bosses that unless they do better this season it could be his last. To bolster the team he recruits a talented tail back. A female student is assigned to help him assimilate with college life and that includes doing his studies because he spent his whole life just playing football. And he finds himself attracted to her and she already has a boyfriend who is also on the team but he might be more concern about losing his position than losing her to him. And the coach has to deal with his other players' situations like the team's quarterback who deals with his father being distant by drinking and it eventually gets him in trouble. And one of the team's defensive players is obviously using steroids but passes the drug tests. Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

From Different Worlds They Come To Prove Themselves In The Gritty World Of College Football. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

24 September 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Challenge - Die Herausforderung  »

Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$23,004,026 (USA)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Bobby Collin's name came from the former head coach at Southern Methodist University (SMU). Coincidentally, he was the coach during the time SMU's football program was brought down by severe NCAA sanctions that led to the "death penalty." See more »

Goofs

Lattimer is seen getting a urine transfusion before the final game so he can pass his steroid test as it has been given by the coach. This is a medically impossible procedure to perform, especially from a med student who may not know what he or she is doing. See more »

Quotes

Steve Lattimer: Yes! Yeah! STARTING DEFENSE PLACE AT THE TABLE! WOOO!
[Charges out the door and heads into the parking lot]
Coach Clayton: Looks like Joe's coming around, he should be ready for Saturday.
Steve Lattimer: PLACE AT THE TABLE! YEAH! YEAH! YEAH!
[Smashes his head through a car window]
Steve Lattimer: YEAH! WOO!
Coach Clayton: Jesus! You think we oughta tell coach?
Coach Humes: Hell no, he don't wanna know about this.
Steve Lattimer: WOO!
[Smashes his head through another car window]
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Workaholics: In the Line of Getting Fired (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Good Things
Written by Kurt Neumann and Sammy Llanas (as Sam Llanas)
Performed by BoDeans
Courtesy of Slash/Reprise Records
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
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User Reviews

Clichéd but still an OK genre film
16 May 2004 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The college football team of the Timberwolves is made up of students from all over America and of all sorts of background. Joe Kane is the team's poster boy and is tipped to go all the way to the NFL; Darnell is a rookie from the tough streets looking for a break with the team and his tutor Autumn and the rest of the team are made up of steroid takers, trash takers and course flunkers. With all this raw aggressions and raw ability, Coach Winters must try and hold it all together despite his own problems.

It has been so many years since it came out that many viewers will have forgotten the fuss that made this film better known than it really deserved to be at the time. I won't go into it but I really fail to see (aside from the one impersonation) why a scene involving chicken with cars was cut yet a scene involving chicken with trains was left in – surely if one was unsuitable then the other should be so too? Now, over 10 years later the film remains more famous that it deserves on the back of some fortunate casting – it was the cast list that attracted to this film. The actual story is a fairly ho-hum sports movie with all the usual clichés about college sports as well as the usual semi-drama stories around the characters – overcoming bad backgrounds, party excesses, girl troubles and so on. As a basic sports movie it is enjoyable enough but it doesn't really do anything that makes it stand out from the genre.

The cast is the ongoing selling point of the film and the performances are OK considering that the material doesn't give them a great deal to do other than go through the genre motions. Caan plays a grizzly old coach who has to cover the player's indiscretions and he does it well enough. Berry looks OK but has little to do in a very male dominated film. Sheffer is supposed to be the lead role but he doesn't really have the ability and he is easily swallowed up by his support cast. Epps is good and minor female roles are also given to Swanson and Adams. Bryniarski overplays his steroid addict but still works and I thought Davis showed a gentle touch when he was given the chance to in minor scenes during the final game.

Overall, aside from the controversy that helped it getting a bigger audience at the time of release and the good list of names in the cast, this is actually just a competent film rather than a really good one. It has all the usual clichés that you expect from college sports films and it doesn't do anything special with them but it doesn't do them badly either. Entertaining as along as you know what to expect.


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